Nikon Coolpix W300 review

Seeking a tough and waterproof compact digital camera for holidays or the great outdoors? The Nikon W300 might just prove its mettle in the wet and the dry

Nikon Coolpix W300
(Image: © Gavin Stoker/Digital Camera World)

Digital Camera World Verdict

Perfect for placing in the hands of smaller members of the family who want to take pictures, this toughened water and drop-proofed Nikon Coolpix W300 point-and-shoot should appeal to butter-fingered big kids too, or simply those seeking to achieve more adventurous outdoor photography without risking their smartphone or larger camera set up. Image quality is perfectly adequate and as a way of capturing shots we might not necessarily otherwise attempt, it comes into its own.


  • +

    Offers the ability to grab images we might not dare otherwise attempt

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    Waterproofed to a decent 30 metres depth

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    Broad zoom range provided by internally stacked and protected 5x lens


  • -

    Small controls can prove fiddly, particularly with wet fingers

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    Auto exposure proves inconsistent

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Despite being small enough to squeeze into a jacket pocket, or a baggy pair of holiday shorts, the drop-proof and water-proof Nikon Coolpix W300 compact camera arrives fully loaded with an essential array of features. These include a 16 megapixel resolution from a standard 1/2.3-inch CMOS sensor, the ability to shoot 4K or 1080P video, body integral GPS, Wi-Fi connectivity and, more unusually even for a waterproof camera, an altimeter and underwater depth gauge. This aids more adventurous users in not straying deeper than the already impressive 30 metres specified by the W300’s waterproofed capabilities, though in reality most users will be larking about in the hotel pool. Additionally the camera claims a degree of dust proofing, plus the ability to be dropped from heights of up to 2.4 metres and survive the impact. We still wouldn’t recommend getting sand in its innards, though.

Of course, given its status as a camera able to withstand a bit of rough and tumble, the relatively modest yet useful 5x optical zoom lens providing the equivalent focal range of 24-120mm in 35mm terms is internally stacked. At no point does it protrude from the body where it might inadvertently happen into harm’s way. The range here also means the camera is most ideally suited to landscape and portrait shots, the two most popular photographic subjects after all. The f/2.8 maximum lens aperture that goes with it is standard stuff for a camera of this ilk. 

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Gavin Stoker

Gavin has over 30 years’ experience of writing about photography and television. He is currently the editor of British Photographic Industry News, and previously served as editor of Which Digital Camera and deputy editor of Total Digital Photography

He has also written for a wide range of publications including T3, BBC Focus, Empire, NME, Radio Times, MacWorld, Computer Active, What Digital Camera and the Rough Guide books.

With his wealth of knowledge, Gavin is well placed to recognize great camera deals and recommend the best products in Digital Camera World’s buying guides. He also writes on a number of specialist subjects including binoculars and monoculars, spotting scopes, microscopes, trail cameras, action cameras, body cameras, filters and cameras straps.